Thursday, October 12, 2017
An enduring presence in Northern Virginia, the Virginia Chamber Orchestra
(VCO) will open its 47th season with “Royal Tributes.” The uniquely themed concert will be conducted by VCO Music Director David Grandis. He selected musical works by contemporary and classic period composers that pay respect to queens, both past and present.
The “Royal Tributes” compositions that patrons will hear are related to Monarchs including Marie Antoinette of France, Queen Elizabeth II of England, and Salote Tupou III, Queen of Tonga. “We know from past experience that audiences will enjoy hearing not only the ‘classical top 40,’ but also selections they may never previously had an opportunity to hear,” said Grandis.
“Beyond the renowned Haydn, the contemporary composers to be represented have received more modern accolades. Dominick Argento was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1975. And, Sir Malcolm Arnold was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his overall service to music. One of Arnold’s pop-culture works is the theme song for the Academy Award winning film, “The Bridge Over the River Kwai.”
For those less familiar with the professional Virginia Chamber Orchestra, it is a chamber orchestra by design. It is not a downsized symphony orchestra. “The music of a chamber orchestra has intimacy and transparency as well as power and drama,” said Grandis.
The “Royal Tributes” concert will include: Haydn’s “Symphony No. 85” in B flat major, H1:85, Arnold’s “Sinfonietta No. 2, Op. 65,” Argento’s “Royal Invitation: Homage to the Queen of Tonga” and Gerald Finzi’s “Romance in E flat major, Op. 11”
Adding to the overall interest of the music, the VCO will have a narrator providing add intriguing true stories to further illustrate the “Royal Tributes” theme. Works by Virginia artist Mark Malecki will be on display to provide a visual arts presence to the event.
The Virginia Chamber Orchestra is supported in part by grants from the Arts Council of Fairfax County and its patrons and other donors.